This June, Whittier church hosted its second annual community blood drive in partnership with the American Red Cross. Plans for the event were made early on after last year’s successful turnout. However, as COVID-19 was spreading and stay-at-home orders were enacted, the team hesitated to move forward.
“The need for blood, plasma, and platelet donations across the nation had significantly increased,” said Lejone Morris, co-leader of the planning team. “We felt that this was still the perfect opportunity for the church to meet the need of the community at large.”
The goal was to collect 45 units by filling 58 appointment slots. The team relied heavily on social media and word of mouth to raise awareness, and church members worked hard to spread the word quickly. One donor even mentioned that she had heard about the event while watching Whittier church’s livestream service on a Sabbath morning.
Safety was top priority. Donors were allowed by appointment only. Donors and staff were required to wear masks and complete symptom checks before entering. The gymnasium—the site of the drive— was thoroughly cleaned and sanitized the day before.
“We are so grateful to God for blessing our event,” Morris said. “Without the community’s participation and our church’s support, we would not have reached our goal.”